Tuesday 10 November 2015

A New Dislike Button on Facebook. What does this Mean for your Business?

The creation of a dislike button has long been encouraged by Facebookers. And now, Facebook have finally found a solution to these demands. Whereas a dislike button could be used as a mechanism to down-vote posts and contribute to cyber-bullying, Facebook’s solution seems to solve these problems. Facebook is developing 7 different emotions to be used instead of the Like button, such as love, laugh, cry, anger and shock. This development is aimed to increase empathy through social media, as ‘liking’ a status is sometimes not appropriate if the topic is sad or serious. These new Facebook reactions are being tested in Ireland and Spain, but while we wait, let’s think about how this update can be used by savvy marketers.

For brands, this feature unlocks a lot of potential in determining what consumers are feeling, and why they are feeling it. The increased specificity through using these reactions will give marketers a huge insight into how their social media posts are being perceived by their market. The emotional experience of consumers has a massive impact in their loyalty to a brand, Forrester analyst Megan Burns stating, "Emotion was the No. 1 factor in customer loyalty across 17 of the 18 industries that we studied".

Although the emotional reactions of your audience are vital in analysing, maintaining and progressing your market, what is just as important, is knowing the drive behind their reactions. While Facebook will likely offer some analytics around the number of likes, loves, wows and sad faces, businesses need to take this data and pair it with connected comments. With text analytics, businesses can deduce lots of free-form customer feedback. When coupled with the data from Facebook reactions, this data will reveal the "why" behind the emotion, even with thousands of comments.
It is important to note that ‘Facebook reactions’ are designed to make it easier for mobile-users to react without having to comment. Therefore it may be likely that comment volume will decrease, meaning it is even more vital to analyse the comments that your post does receive.

"People aren't looking for an ability to down vote other people's posts. What they really want is to be able to express empathy," said Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Just as the ‘Reactions’ feature enables Facebookers to engage and empathise further, they will expect an increase of engagement and empathy from your business. Timely and considerate engagement is therefore crucial in maintaining your market. Prioritise comments where response time particularly matters, such as:
‘I’m annoyed because my discount code doesn’t work on your mobile app. Why not?’

This comment, combined with an angry reaction, should be engaged with and sorted as quickly as possible. The first response should be to apologise to this customer and indicate your effort in fixing the problem. You then highlight this issue for the product team so the technical issue is corrected to prevent the same response from other customers. That's putting factual data together with emotional data to drive action.

 Although there are many positives to Facebook’s potential update, there are still many unknowns. How will the new Facebook algorithm work in relation to post reach and popularity. The ‘Like’ system was simple: the more likes, the more reach (generally). However with other reactions available, ‘Likes’ will not have the same impact. Will the ‘Love’ reaction or the ‘Wow’ reaction have more impact? And what about this ‘Angry’ reaction? If a post gives awareness of a social or political issue which angers people, then the ‘Angry’ reaction should not solely have a negative impact on post reach.

Even with these unknowns, this Facebook update gives businesses a huge insight into customer experience on social media.  When utilized to its maximum, this new data source can influence everything from marketing strategy, product developments, customer service improvements, and social customer care processes. Make sure you are ready for the launch of this vital new Facebook update!

If you have any questions, feel free to drop me an email (info@digity.co.uk) or call: 01189 100 012.

Catherine Dove

Digital Marketing AssistantDigity, Online Marketing

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